Printing Your Own Handgun

Wiki Weapon, a $20K project to design and manufacture the world’s first fully 3D-printed handgun, was at least temporarily thwarted when the company who leased the project its 3D printer got word of their intentions and reclaimed its hardware. Robert Beckhusen explains why:

It’s legal in the United States to manufacture a gun at home without a license — provided it’s not for sale or trade. But this doesn’t include all weapons. Machine guns and sawed-off shotguns are illegal to manufacture without a license. There’s also a law requiring “any other weapon, other than a pistol or a revolver … capable of being concealed on the person” to be subject to review by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms an Explosives (ATF).

[Project director Cody] Wilson’s plans may have fallen under this review, which could have provoked [the 3D printer company] Stratasys to pull the lease. There’s also another law, the Undetectable Firearms Act, which could mean a fully plastic pistol would be illegal regardless of how it was made.

Previous coverage of 3D printed contraband here.